Acute Laryngitis

Acute Laryngitis: Pathogenesis and clinical findings Infectious
Author: Charmaine Szalay-Anderson Reviewers: Shayan Hemmati, Sunawer Aujla, Derrick Randall*,
Viral (most common)
Malaise Fever
Atopy (asthma, allergy)
Gastroesophageal Reflux
Trauma or damage to larynx
Yan Yu*
* MD at time of publication
Environmental Pollution/Inhalants
Bacterial (S. pneumoniae,
H. influenzae, M. catarrhalis)
Systemic immune response
Spread of infection to larynx through upper respiratory tract
Infection of the vocal folds and surrounding tissue
(vocal misuse/ trauma)
(Area in the neck that contains the structures for voice production, anatomically anterior to the esophagus, inferior to the pharynx and superior to the trachea)
Irritation of the vocal folds and surrounding tissue
Inflammatory cascade triggered
Acute Laryngitis
Symptoms for <3 weeks Acute injury to vocal folds Vocal fold lesions (i.e., vocal polyps) Laryngeal inflammation Neutrophils and macrophages release inflammatory cytokines Local laryngeal inflammationà↑ vascular permeability ↑ Secretion of mucous leading to airway congestion Cough reflex initiated to clear airway congestion Cough Edema of vocal folds and surrounding tissue Dysphagia (difficulty swallowing) Dysphonia (difficulty speaking) Odynophagia (painful swallowing) Swelling impairs vocal cord vibration Frank aphonia (loss of voice) Progressive worsening of edema Legend: Pathophysiology Mechanism Sign/Symptom/Lab Finding Complications Published May 24, 2023 on